Ashton close to parish approval

Published 12:00 am Wednesday, December 13, 2000


HAHNVILLE – Ashton Plantation Estates, a massive development expected to build 2,000 lots between Luling proper and Interstate 310, is edging closer to reality. At a recent meeting of the St. Charles Parish Planning and ZoningCommission only minor concerns remained to be sorted out one way or the other in time for the Feb. 1 commission meeting and the anticipated approvalof construction from the parish. These concerns, according to the parishs public works and wastewater director Steven Fall, include adjusting the design of cul-de-sacs to more easily accommodate a school bus turnaround, the inclusion of sidewalks on the final drawings and layout of the utility lines along the lot servitudes. Items of major concern to parish officials and neighbors, such as drainage for the development and sewage treatment, have passed the parish hurdles, and the developers are hoping to begin lot sales and construction of new homes in 2001. “We thought we had everything in a row, but at the last minute we got a laundry list of very minor issues to be resolved,” according to Greg Lier, vice-president of Rathborne Land Co., co-developers of Ashton with LevertLand Co..”Were asking for a round-table discussion with all the involved parish departments and the Ashton people later this week,” added planning and zoning director Bob Lambert. At that meeting, if it comes off as expected, the Ashton developers will discuss which items they will adjust and which they may seek waivers on from the commission, with pending parish council approval. The entire permit process, nearly 18 months in the making, could be completed by February. Rathborne Land and Levert Land first announced theAshton project just over three years ago. One hurdle, that of wastewater treatment, was settled with the Ashton developers agreeing to tie in with the Bayou Gauche force-main to the Hahnville treatment plant. “Weve spent a lot of time and money to make sure this will work,” Lier said. Next on line, once the construction approval is granted, will be to bid the River Road work for the access road and the lake construction, to be followed by the main “spine” road of the development. Marketing of Ashtonshould pick up later in 2001, and the first homeowner could move onto his new lot by early 2002. “Its just been slow and tedious,” Lier added.